Saturday, January 07, 2006

Am I A Good Friend?

The past few days I have been contemplating friendships. Not necessarily my friendships, but friendships in general.

We've all heard the expression, "You've got to be a friend to have a friend," and I believe there is some very sage advice therein. However, as believers, we do not simply want friendships for the momentary pleasures of good company, good conversation, or good times. We want, no we need, friendships that spur us on to become more Christlike.

As I reflect upon my life, I can recall specific times when my friends were God's key instruments in my spiritual journey. For instance, in junior high I was hanging out with people that were encouraging sinful behavior in my life. Thankfully, my parents recognized this and moved me to a Christian high school, where I made some friends that supported me in the things of God.

Another key time in my life were the university years. As I was being fed humanism and secular ideas in the classroom, I was very thankful for a small circle of friends that help me counteract those ideas with bible study and times of prayer.

There have been numerous people throughout the years which God has used to "direct" my spiritual path and I am truly indebted to them. Sometimes they have been soft and gentle - leading me simply by their example. Other times they have had to be very direct and almost painful in encouraging me closer to my Lord. Both methods have been needed and it is the Holy Spirit's guidance which has made them effective.

This leads me to examine myself. Am I helping my friends along the narrow road? I know part of my responsibility is to "spur one another on to love and good deeds."(Heb.10:24) And I also long to be like Paul, "gentle among you, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children."(1Thess.2:7) May this new year be one rich in friendship as we encourage one another "all the more, as we see the day drawing near."(Heb.10:25)


Kim said...

I tagged you for a silly game, marlene!

Kim from Hiraeth said...

This is my first time here and I have thoroughly enjoyed my visit! What a home-y blog this is! I feel as though I have pulled up a stool at the kitchen counter with a cup of coffee. . .

I'll be back! Blessings to you on your new blog!

Dan S. said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Homemanager said...

Thank you for your post on friendship. For a long time I struggled about the "best friend" thing, because I never really had that kind of friendship. I had friends but with various degrees of closeness. Over this past year or so, the Lord started to show me that the whole idea about having one "best friend" is His thoughts concerning marriage. Our husbands should fill that most special place.
Then I was praying about other relationships and how they should look. Again, the Lord started to show me how the body of Christ fills this desire for friendship. Just as it is a many membered body, we are blessed by all the many parts. They influence us for our growth and for His Glory.
What a wonderful God we serve!
God Bless,

Anonymous said...

This is so true! I have a wonderful friend whom I've known since elementary school. I can't tell you how many times God has calles us to be forthright with each other and help eachother become more Christ Like.

Great message, thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

I love it finally someone who gets it. Yes I totally agree. I am really researching friends as if I question my ability. I am a good , loyal friend, it's just hard finding them that return the respect and grow in the Lord. thanks for sharing your wisdom.
~ Christy

meres zinawi said...

Thanks for the pos about how to be a best freind, its a good message i like it. i am also reseaching about friendship and thats a grea idea.God bless you so much.
am melissa